Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Unrequited Love …In Music

Why does it take sooo long for great artist to earn their just do? There are artist out these days that I either stumbled across, became acquainted with through six degrees of separation (w/ other artist), or like the artist J*Davey, got yoked up by their sound through online radio। But what about those who aren’t online (it’s possible)? We miss out on such greatness until we can afford such luxuries as internet. Then when we start talking about “this new artist!” with co-workers or friends, they look at us like where the hell you been.

I think a good example of what I’m saying is Maxwell…FINALLY WINNING A GRAMMY! Sure better late than never (so they say), but with all the Love these artist put into their music, shouldn’t that same love be returned? You may think I’m rambling on, but I am actually going to place some videos and info about artist I feel aren’t where they should be. It may not make a big change, but a pebble can start a large ripple.

First up: J*Davey

I must admit I didn’t like (what I thought was a guy ft. a female singer) J*Davey when I first heard her. It was very space age, acid sounding, on and off beat at the same time…basically all the things I love about the sound--now. With a diverse array of influences, the eclectic twosome J*Davey — female vocalist Jack Davey (Brianna Cartwright) and producer Brook D’Leau —have conjured up a sound that cannot be defined in my opinion, but I will be listening.

"Mr. Mister"

Next: Ledisi

Ledisi Anibade Young (pronounced /ˈlɛdɨsiː/) is a R&B singer-songwriter from New Orleans. Her first name means "to bring forth" or "to come here" in Yoruba. Ledisi grew up in a musical family. Her mother sang in a Louisiana R&B band and her stepfather, Joseph Pierce III,(deceased) was a drummer in the New Orleans area. Ledisi first began performing publicly at age eight with the New Orleans Symphony Orchestra. She moved to Oakland, California, where she was nominated for a Shellie award in 1990 for her performance in a production of The Wiz and performed in an extended run with the San Francisco cabaret troupe, Beach Blanket Babylon. She studied opera and piano for five years at University of California Berkeley in their Young Musicians Program.
Ledisi is known for her jazz influenced vocals, yet her stage presence is also on point. Her new project Turn Me Loose, is in stores now.

"Take Time" (excellent performance)

Next up: Georgia Anne Muldrow

Georgia Anne Muldrow is an American singer and musician signed to Stones Throw Records. She is the first female artist signed to the label and seems to be a close friend of fellow label artist Dudley Perkins. Her father is the late jazz guitarist Ronald Muldrow and her mother is Rickie Byars-Beckwith, Musical director of Agape Spiritual Center in Culver City, CA. Her early work involved collaborations with the Platinum Pied Pipers, Sa-Ra, and J*DaVeY. She is known for playing the majority of instruments featured on her recordings. Her vocal style and musical accompaniment are often considered free-form in nature.

"Lovelight" (music only)

Next: Eric Roberson

Eric Roberson is an R&B and soul singer-songwriter from Rahway, New Jersey. He is sometimes referred to simply as Erro.
His first single, "The Moon", was released through Warner Bros. records in 1994. Roberson recorded an album for that label, which remained unreleased. He subsequently returned to Howard University to complete his studies in Musical Theatre. After performing in a number of musicals and plays, he landed a songwriting deal through the EMI label, and went on to collaborate with Philadelphia-based artists such as Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild, and most extensively, DJ Jazzy Jeff.

"If I Had a Chance"

Next: Platinum Pied Pipers

Platinum Pied Pipers--Waajeed (Robert O'Bryant), and multi-instrumentalist Saadiq (Darnell Bolden, not to be confused with Raphael Saadiq). Their music usually features a rotating and varied array of artists. The two met through rapper Baatin in 1992. Sometime in 2000, they decided to form a duo and began releasing 12"s and mixtapes. It was their collaboration with Dwele in 2003, however, called "Ridin' High" which caught the ears of music listeners, and set the stage for a full-length album. The pair have a rather distinctive mixture of sounds as, although Waajeed is primarily a hip hop producer, Saadiq is a protégé of Motown producer Barrett Strong, making for a finely tuned middle ground. As stated in interviews, the name "Platinum Pied Pipers" was chosen at random and has no connection to the Pied Piper folk tale.

{I couldn't find a link}

Last(but not least):Emily King

The first time I heart Walk In My Shoes, it was like taking a deep breath after holding it for a long period of time. Michael Baisden (excellent for introducing new talent) played her on the regular, but it wasn’t until I heard more of her East Side Story release; the Grammy Award-nominated debut studio album. The album was released in the United States on August 28, 2007. Five of the songs included on the album are from her 2006 EP "East Side Story Sampler", the sampler was given away to audience members at various tours and appearances which gained hype and paved way for the album.


Some of these artist may be content with the pace of their careers, and my idea of recognition for them may appear a bit Microwave; but, though I understand all good things come in time--like a fine wine--some things are forgotten if left stagnant for too long, I.e. Tevin Campbell.

In conclusion, I have a question (that sounds wrong, somehow)…Is it better for a performer to rise to the top slowly or gain notoriety as quickly as it comes and risk burnout? Leave a comment.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Who Is Tionna Smalls?

Have you ever met someone for the first time, who, out of nowhere began to tell you what you needed to do to improve yourself? Your first reaction is to get defensive, but, you can't because there is something sincere about what they're telling you. Though it may not be accurate, that was my first impression of Miss Tionna Smalls.

Some of you may ask "who is Tionna Smalls?" Many of you (especially bloggers) are very acquainted with Miss. Tionna--through her work with the Gawker weblog magazine, blogger.com (invited readers only), her self-published book Girl, Get Your Mind Right! (which will be re-released), or for reality show fanatics What Chilli Wants; which introduced Tionna Smalls to a whole new larger audience.

Though not an actual "Match-Maker", her professionalism, expertise and experience in relationships proved an asset in that position. Her pull-no-punches get-the-job-done personality was not only entertaining, but helped her complete her task with success.
What's in the future? From what I hear; continued work in the non-profit field. I hope this sexy BBW will consider modeling as part of her repertoire. Her confidence will influence may women--young and younger (your only as OLD as you feel). Until then-- hate her, love her, love to hate her, hate to love her, whichever, Miss Tionna Smalls is making moves and we are watching.
Gotta Love It!!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Great (Jill) Scott! What a cli-Max(well)!

Alright, the title is a little cheesy, but the Jill Scott/Maxwell tour is satisfying the quality starved musical palette of fans state-wide:
Connection w/ audience>> PERFECT
Live instrumentation>>EXQUISITE
Showmanship>> CAPTIVATING
Overall Performance>> OFF THE GD PLANET!!

Those are descriptions of no surprise to true-to-heart J. Scott/Maxwell fans. If you have never witnessed either of the two live, you are missing out on an experience of a lifetime. Jill Scott stands with the poise of an Opera Diva as she performs. Pulling notes from the air, telling stories about emotions and happenings--you can almost see the words. Once accustomed to her ways, you know when she's in her zone; arms propped mid-air before her, elbows bent, hands moving in and out as if conducting an orchestra, or crocheting.

Now, Mr. (cli)Maxwell...this man paints the most beautiful portraits of Love, loss, and understanding. The lyrics are so poetic and meaningful. The delivery...it's like being pulled in close by your hips, and having your man just lick your neck then softly bite your ear.  You can't help but notice that right pointer go (usually at his side) as if he's secretly writing out the words, or the way he cocks his head to the side when hitting a certain note...(OMG!) he is just sooo sexy, and funny too! I won't give away his little comments, but, they are truly for the grown and sexy (his body is on point. Those body huggin' Marvin Gaye(esque) suits make ya think and blush.)

All-in-all, this will be the concert of the year for true music lovers. Our lyrical thirst is quenched, and our souls full...ahhhh.